The Politics of Fear – Part 3/5

September 16, 2011

As long as there is no law to insure balance and honesty in the media, Americans are ripe to fear almost anything and China is a tempting target to induce fear and loathing by manipulating public opinion.

Since the history of Sinophobia in the United States starts with the California Gold Rush (1848 – 1855) leading to the Chinese Exclusion Act (1882), which formalized this prejudice into a law that would not be removed from the books until 1965 (eighty-three years later) during the Civil Rights era, China is a perfect target since the demonizing was started in the 19th century.

Due to this early demonizing, during the later 19th and early 20th century, many Chinese were relentlessly beaten just because of their race, and in 1884, the Chinese Exclusion Act was amended in Washington D.C., so it would apply to all ethnic Chinese regardless of their country of origin.

As the years went by, other amendments were added to the Chinese Exclusion Act making the law more restrictive for the Chinese.

Political Scientist Corey Robin wrote Fear: the History of a Political Idea in 2004, published by Oxford University Press, which may also help explain why there is so much antagonism toward China in the United States.

On August 17, 2011, KPFA’s Against the Grain, a radio program about politics, society and ideas talked with Robin about how “fear dominates our society. Fear of crime, fear of the poor, fear of foreign terrorists, to which we might add fear of our government and fear of our bosses.”


Watch the Young Turks reveal Glenn Beck‘s lies.

Newsday said, “Robin argues that whereas Hobbes and Arendt appreciated the political dimensions of fear, Montesquieu and Tocqueville relegated the idea to the realm of the psychological—a view of fear that has endured, blinding us to the self-serving ways elites deploy fear for political ends.”

Steven Lukes, Professor of Sociology at New York University, said, “Corey Robin provides an acute and sustained analysis of the very idea of fear, of the role of fear as an instrument of political rule and of its unacknowledged prevalence within our liberal democratic institutions.”

The National Post said, “Brilliant…. What he does in Fear is show us, by carefully plotting the progress of modern fear politics from the Enlightenment to present day, that we are as dependent on fear as a political vehicle, if not more so, as we are the charades of left/right/middle factionalism.”

Robin mentions that fear is a method used by political groups and individuals to advance themselves and/or their political and religious agendas.

One example is Glenn Beck, who often incites violence and fear with lies and fear mongering (for more about Glenn Beck, watch the embedded video with this post).

In addition, according to former Fox News producer Charlie Reina… Fox News’s editorial policy is set from the top down in the form of a daily memo: “frequently, Reina says, it also contains hints, suggestions and directives on how to slant the day’s news – invariably, he says, in a way that’s consistent with the politics and desires of the Bush administration.”

Moreover, the December 17, 2010 issue of The Atlantic said, “One alleged news network fed its audience a diet of lies, while contributing financially to the party that benefited from those lies. Those who work for Fox News are not working for a journalistic enterprise. They are working for the communications department of a political party.”

Without an honest, trustworthy media reporting honest and balanced news, how can a democracy that depends on a literate and informed public survive?

In fact, how will China rid itself of being seen as a demon by many in America?

Continued September 17, 2011 in  The Politics of Fear – Part 4 or return to Part 2

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Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of The Concubine Saga. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too. This is the love story Sir Robert Hart did not want the world to discover.

To subscribe to “iLook China”, look for the “Subscribe” button at the top of the screen in the menu bar, click on it then follow directions.

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Free to Lie – Part 3/3

July 14, 2011

I found it ironic that the truth about Social Security came from FDR’s grandson.

James Roosevelt Jr. says, “There is a saying that if you repeat something often enough it becomes the truth.”  Then later in the piece, he points out that “Social Security’s critics have been casting the same aspersions (an unfavorable or damaging remark; slander, which means a false and malicious statement) on the program for 75 years.” Source: Social Security’s Enduring Truths

I also learned that Social Security costs are funded out of its own dedicated revenue stream, which is paid by workers and employers.  It does not and cannot borrow money to finance its operations. There is no deficit financing in Social Security and by the end of 2010, the fund had a positive balance of $2.6 trillion and enough money to pay full benefits through the year 2036.


How the media lies to manipulate us – length about one hour

Compare that with the US National Debt, which carries a negative balance of more than $14 trillion while Social Security has no debt and carries a positive balance, yet, thanks to echoes in the media and on the Internet, many people believe that Social Security is almost broke and is a burden to the taxpayer.

There is a lesson to be learned here.

Next time you hear or read something about China from a US politician, a critic of China or from the Western Media, do not accept it as the absolute truth. Check the facts first—that is, if you can find them under all the lies.

After all, in the US where freedom of the press is protected, that means lies are also protected as long as they do not slander another individual.  Everything else is fair game for manufacturing the truth regardless of the facts.

Return to Free to Lie – Part 2 or start with Part 1

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Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of the concubine saga, My Splendid Concubine & Our Hart. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too.

To subscribe to “iLook China”, look for the “Subscribe” button at the top of the screen in the menu bar, click on it then follow directions.


China’s Future Political Divide Revealed

May 24, 2011

A report by Melissa Chan for Al Jazeera reminded me of America’s political divide between red (Republican) and blue (Democratic) states.

If we look at the four US presidential elections between 1996 – 2008, we discover the political divide in America, and it is mostly between large urban population centers and rural/middle America as if America were two countries — not one.

A similar split may be growing in China, and Melissa Chan’s report, “China’s Youth Divided over Superpower Status” reveals the divide that parallels America’s split between old-world conservative values and new-world, compassionate idealism.

Chan reported from Beijing April 8, 2011 revealing China’s (middle-class urban) youth were living the wild life dancing the nights away as North American and European youth have been doing for decades.

For China’s form of new-world idealism, the music is heavy metal. “Stand up!” the musician sings. “Stand up! You are Chinese! Rise Up! You are the descendents of the dragon!”

“However,” Melissa Chan says, “this euphoria is qualified by a sense of duty missing in the West.”

Hu Song, the lead singer of Yakso, a popular heavy metal group, told Chan, “China most certainly has emerged as a power. But I hope with great power…people’s spirits will also rise up or else it is a problematic power.”

After watching the Al Jazeera news report, it was obvious that many rural youths do not agree with the middle-class urban youths that have the luxury to spend nights dancing to heavy metal, a lifestyle imported from the West along with American fast food, which brought an epidemic of diabetes and heart disease to urban China.

For some (mainly among China’s 700 million rural Chinese) this is expressed in pride and patriotism.

Others (mainly middle-class urban youth) are more skeptical of their leaders, raising their voices through the medium of a dynamic youth counterculture such as heavy metal music with long nights of dancing accompanied by increased drug use as in the West.

There is another difference between rural and urban China. The one-child policy, which focused mainly in urban areas while many peasants on farms in rural China were allowed to have more than one child so there were more hands to work the field. This helped most of rural China avoid raising little emperor/empresses — another explanation for the growing division in thought.

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Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of the concubine saga, My Splendid Concubine & Our Hart. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too.

To subscribe to “iLook China”, look for the “Subscribe” button at the top of the screen in the menu bar, click on it then follow directions.


Chinese Stereotype Alive and Rotten in America

April 29, 2010

I read a political opinion Column on Gather written by Devin Barber and ran into an example of the American manufactered Chinese Stereotype–not from Barber but from one of the comments to his column.

Devin Barber

To find that example, I suggest you read Devin Barber’s column “Left of the Right”. The particular column I was reading was TEA Partiers Say “It’s Time To Take Our Country Back” What Does That Mean?

I was enjoying myself (laughing at some of the inane comments from the ignorant and/or stupid people who keep bashing Obama and the Democrats as if they are devils) until I reached this from Bruce, “and then if we manage to survive I think we will either end up with a totalitarian regime where the citizens are slaves like China…

My response to Bruce’s comment started , “Bruce, what do you know about China?  The image or opinion of China that most Americans have stuck in the gunk between their ears is the China of Mao. 

“Mao died in 1976, and the Cultural Revolution ended. China created a market economy that keeps growing, and the people of China are not slaves. Actually, most of those that live in the cities have almost as much freedom as Americans in the US.  That is about five hundred million people. (Eight hundred million live in the countryside and are not as fortunate at those in the cities, but they are still not slaves.)” 

If you are interested in reading the rest, please go to Devin’s column and read the comments. Devin’s column is not about China but that one comment demonstrates the dangers that come with being an uneducated voter like Bruce. It’s scary that anyone may vote in America regardless of how globally ignorant or stupid they are. There should be a knowledge test before one earns the right to vote.

Learn more about The American Assault on China’s Currency

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Lloyd Lofthouse is the award-winning author of the concubine saga, My Splendid Concubine & Our Hart. When you love a Chinese woman, you marry her family and culture too. 

If you want to subscribe to iLook China, there is a “Subscribe” button at the top of the screen in the menu bar.